My name is Chidera ‘Dera’ Eneh and I am a recent graduate from Sam Houston State University with a B.S. in Criminal Justice and minor in Theatre Arts. College is one big reset button. Become the person you always wanted to be!
The day was Thursday, the temperature was 70°F, and there was a slight chill. All of camp was gathered at Newman’s Nook for Kid’s Choice Campfire, every cabin has to come up with a skit/song/show to show the entire camp, and our Entertainment Director calls out the cabin up next to perform. Red 8 (popularly known on camp as ‘Rojo Ocho’) was up next and as the cabin of 8 boys sauntered to the stage, the crowd was readily anticipating the name of their skit. “The Rojo Ocho Initiation” they proclaimed and they needed a volunteer from the audience. After a couple of seconds scanning the crowd, they called on Mary-Kate the Red Unit Floater. Mary-Kate was a little apprehensive with going up there so they started chanting her name to get going. Soon the entire crowd was chanting “Mary-Kate! Mary-Kate! Mary-Kate!” Face flushed and head down, she makes her way through the crowd and joins the boys on the grassy stage. And in the space between the campers of Roho Ocho starting their skit and the last sounds of applause, I heard it.
Out of the crowd I could hear a faint high-pitched voice, no louder than a whisper, floating through the air, chanting. It was hard to decipher what was being said at first but when the words finally reached my ear I realized he was chanting “Sacrifice! ….. Sacrifice! …. Sacrifice”! After scanning the crowd, I was one of the few to locate who it was coming from.
The 8 year old camper chanting ‘Sacrifice’ no bigger than a large teddy bear was on his feet, right fist in the air, and fire behind his eyes. He was drenched with determination and his voice only grew stronger as the crowd’s faded into complete silence. And horror…
Nobody knew whether to be disturbed and worried, or just pretend we didn’t see/hear anything. It took a good 30 seconds of silence (Sacrifice chanting) until an adult said something and the staff started nervously laughing and redirecting the crowd… it took some time to convince him that they weren’t going to sacrifice Mary-Kate and roast her over the fire. (Literally what he thought was going to happen). Overwhelmed with disappointment, he melted back into his seat.
This story still makes me giggle til this day. I hope it was somewhat entertaining, and you aren’t as traumatized as I am. Thank you for reading!